Aleksandras Radzius has some history to share that will come in handy if you plan to attend this year’s Defenders’ Day celebration on Sept. 1.
Shortly after the Sept. 12, 1814, at the Battle of North Point, lyrics were written about it. Although we yet don’t know who wrote them or when they were written, these lyrics were included in an 1836 songster. Further, the lyrics were written to be sung to the tune of “Anacreon in Heaven,” just as Francis Scott Key intended his lyrics to be sung.
Actually, there are about 100 lyrics from our early history for the tune “Anacreon in Heaven,” with at least two written by Francis Scott Key. One was written in 1805 on the occasion of the return of Stephen Decatur from the Barbary Coast.
Those of us who were at last September’s Defenders’ Day Commemoration and Battle of North Point Reenactment at Fort Howard State Park heard the “Battle of North Point” sung by dr. David Hildebrand, thanks to a grant from Maryland Humanities.
The 14 versus of “Battle of North Point” lyrics are packed with historical detail, whereas the 4 versus of the Key composition are full of patriotic feelings.
Do yourself a favor. Learn how one of our citizens 200 years ago wanted the Battle of North Point to be remembered. Come to Fort Howard on September 1 and hear Dr. Hildebrand perform “Battle of North Point”. Read the verses at your leisure at the Dundalk Historical Museum or find them on-line. But, learn more about what happened on those hallowed acres where our patriots shed blood on September 12, 1814.